December 29, 2011
I received this wonderful note from the mom of a young boy I met while speaking at their community school. Her son is an amazing kid full of spark and passion - despite some challenges like a missing arm.
YuYu had a great success yesterday that he has asked me to write to you about.
You were one of the first people he wanted to be sure heard about this.
For two school years now, YuYu has been attempting to reach the top of the climbing wall in the gymnasium. If one is successful with this endeavor then there is a bell hung from the high ceiling of the gym and when you get to the top of the wall you get to ring the bell.
For two years, he has made many attempts to climb all the way to the top of the wall so he could ring the bell. But he had never succeeded. His prosthetic arm is cumbersome and, as much as he tried, he never made it to the much-longed-for bell.
At the beginning of this school year, YuYu declared that THIS was the year he would reach the top and ring the bell and he would do it before the end of the year.
Well, yesterday was YuYu's day! He succeeded in climbing all the way up the wall and he proudly rang that bell with the biggest smile you have ever seen in your life! With the eyes of all of his classmates and many of the teachers and the principal cheering him on wildly - YuYu achieved his goal and could not have been more proud of himself!
After he climbed back down he said: "This is the greatest day of my life except for the day I was born. I kept thinking 'I can do this' and I just kept looking up and I did it!"
On the way home from school in the car YuYu said, "Mama, can you please email Erik and let him know I did it? Erik climbed Mt Everest and I climbed the wall and rang that bell! I think he will be very proud of me today."
Well, I am very proud of YuYu!
We're entering a brand-new year in which significant challenges abound. Whether we're climbing the biggest mountain or the gymnasium climbing wall, why don’t we all grab hold of YuYu's spirit and reach to achieve our absolute best.
I wish everyone a Happy New Year and a chance to ring that bell in 2012!